Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 19, 2018

Syria - Who Is Stalling The OPCW Investigation In Douma?

Why has the fact finding mission (FFM)of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) not visited Douma?

The OPCW inspectors are held up by the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) which has a say about any movement of UN aligned organizations in areas that might be dangerous. The UNDSS is led by an Australian police / intelligence officer. The holdup seems to be intended.

On Sunday April 8 videos were published of an alleged 'chemical attack' in Douma near Damascus. At that time the area was under control of Jaish al-Islam, a Salafi terrorist organization financed by Saudi Arabia. The various videos from terrorist supporters like the 'White Helmets' were unconvincing. They showed obviously arranged scenes of an alleged 'barrel bomb' and manipulated bodies of dead children that had been moved and decorated with shaving foam to superficially fit the claims of a 'chemical incident'. Another video showed people in a hospital being doused with water for no apparent reason.

An often quoted opposition news outlet, the Syrian Observatory in Britain, denied that a 'chemical attack' had happened. It reported on April 8 of suffocation after a shelter collapsed due to bombing:

[I]n among the casualties there are 21 civilians including 9 children and 3 women were killed as a result of suffocation caused by the shelling which destroyed basements of houses as a result of the violence bombardment that stopped about an hour ago on Douma area.

The 'chemical incident' was likely faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield.

A day after the incident the Salafi terrorists of Jaish al-Islam gave up and left the area under a ceasefire deal arranged with the help of the Russian military in Syria. The ceasefire deal does not allow the Syrian army to enter the area, only the Russian military police is allowed.

Russian military police immediately entered the area and investigated the house where, allegedly, people were killed by 'chemical weapons'. They found no evidence that such an event had taken place. The Syrian government asked the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical aWeapons (OPCW) to investigate the case.

Many international news teams have since visited the area where the incident allegedly took place. The also visited the field hospital shown in one of the opposition videos. Doctors at that hospital deny (vid) that any patient of theirs had been affected by a chemical attack. The cases they had seen had breathing difficulties caused by the inhalation of dust thrown up through exploding bombs and artillery. Alleged 'victims' shown in the hospital video claim (vid) they were paid to perform.

The regime-change shills are denying that any claims of the hospital staff working in the now government controlled Douma could be true. Medics are liars, unless they are controlled by Jihadis. See for example this shoddy propaganda piece by the Guardian: Syrian medics 'subjected to extreme intimidation' after Douma attack by Martin Chulov in Beirut and Kareem Shaheen in Istanbul.


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The piece begins:

The head of the largest medical relief agency in Syria claims that medics who responded to the suspected gas attack in Douma have been subjected to “extreme intimidation” by Syrian officials who seized biological samples, forced them to abandon patients and demanded their silence.

Now look at the picture. It shows Syrian Red Crescent personal. The caption is false. It says: "Medics take a wounded man into hospital in Damascus after rockets were fired in Douma on 7 April." The picture is actually from a series published by the Syrian news agency SANA.


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The SANA series is headlined: "Injuries among civilians in Jaish al-Islam mortar attacks on Damascus".

The attack was FROM the terrorists in Douma on civilians in Damascus, not IN Douma as the Guardian insinuates.

The pictured Red Crescent in Syria, founded in 1942, has 1,592 staff and some 6,000 volunteers. It is indeed the "the largest medical relief agency in Syria". But it is not the one the Guardian describes and quotes:

Dr Ghanem Tayara, the director of the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organisations (UOSSM) said doctors responsible for treating patients in the hours after the 7 April attack have been told that their families will be at risk if they offer public testimonies about what took place.

The Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations was founded in 2012, works from Reyhanli in Turkey and claims to have 600 staff. It consists of the Syrian American Medial Society (SAMS), which is funded by the CIA front USAID and lobbies for regime change in Syria, the British-Syrian Medical Society which only works in 'rebel' held areas, as well as British and U.S. p.o.-box 'charities' which collect donations. SAMS and UOSSM are said to be Muslim Brotherhood fronts.

The Guardian shows a Syrian Red Crescent/Red Cross picture in the context of ridiculous claims made by an organization on the side of the Jihadis. The Syrian Red Crescent has no relation to that organization. UOSSM is misidentified as the largest relief organization in Syria. Its claims are repeated without doubts by Guardian 'journalists' in Turkey and Lebanon to counter interviews and observations made by real journalists on the ground in Douma. The piece and its presentation is bottom fishing by a once reasonable paper. Jonathan Cook has more to say about that shoddy Guardian piece.

On Friday April 13 the OPCW fact finding mission arrived in Damascus. On Saturday France, the U.K and the United States, (FUKUS), bombed an agricultural and medical research center in Damascus as well as two Syrian army depots. The attack missed its other targets, a failure the U.S. military attempts to cover up. The attack came despite doubts in the Pentagon and elsewhere about what actually happened. High ranking British military generals have publicly doubted the claims of a Syrian 'chemical attack'.

The suburb where the alleged incident happened is only a few miles away from the center of Damascus. Journalists and camera teams walk all over the place without any protection and freely interview hospital personal. The OPCW has yet to reach the area. It claims that the security is insufficient.

Like other organizations aligned with the United Nations the OPCW is relying on the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) for intelligence and protection.

Yesterday the Director General of the OPCW Ahmet Üzümcü, a Turkish career diplomat who was earlier Turkey's Permanent Representative to NATO, issued a statement:

On 16 April, we received confirmation from the National Authority of the Syrian Arab Republic that, under agreements reached to allow the evacuation of the population in Ghouta, the Syrian military were unable to enter Douma. The security for the sites where the FFM plans to deploy was under the control of the Russian Military Police. The United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) has made the necessary arrangements with the Syrian authorities to escort the team to a certain point and then for the escort to be taken over by the Russian Military Police. However, the UNDSS preferred to first conduct a reconnaissance visit to the sites, which took place yesterday. FFM team members did not participate in this visit.

On arrival at Site 1, a large crowd gathered and the advice provided by the UNDSS was that the reconnaissance team should withdraw. At Site 2, the team came under small arms fire and an explosive was detonated. The reconnaissance team returned to Damascus.

(Note: Only about 10% of the population of the Ghouta area to which Douma belongs, the terrorist and their families, were evacuated. Other people have stayed or returned to the now liberated areas.)

No other organization reported of recent shots or explosions in Douma.

Even the New York Times, a staunch defender of the 'opposition' in Syria, wonders about the hold-up but does not bother to answer the question:

[T]he fact that journalists had been able to wander around Douma unmolested raised questions about why it was not deemed safe enough for the investigators to visit.

Why were, allegedly, shots fired at the UN Security team but not on anyone else visiting the area?

If, as the terrorist supporters claim, Chlorine was used in the 'chemical attack', the OSCE investigators are unlikely to find any physical evidence of it. Chlorine dissipates and leaves no unique traces in the dead body. Interviews with local witnesses though could be of value.

One gets the impression that certain circles fear the the OPCW could reach the area, talk to witnesses and confirm the claims made by doctors in the hospital as well as by many journalists that no 'chemical attack' took place. It would expose the attack on Syria as a reckless and unjustified war crime.

The leader of the UNDSS is an Australian police commander:

Mr. Drennan, who from 2009 served as Deputy Commissioner National Security with the Australian Federal Police, brings to the position an extensive career in policing and law enforcement at the community, national and international levels.

Is it possible that a distinguished Australian police commander delays or prevents the OPCW investigation to protect the British and U.S. allies?

---
Previous Moon of Alabama posts on the 'chemical attack' in Douma and its consequences.

April 8 - Syria - Timelines Of 'Gas Attacks' Follow A Similar Scheme (Update II)
April 9 - Syria - Any U.S. Strike Will Lead to Escalation
April 11 - Syria - A U.S. Attack Would Be Futile - But Serve A Purpose - by M. K. Bhadrakumar
April 11 - Trump Asks Russia To Roll Over - It Won't
April 12 - Syria - Threat Of Large War Recedes But May Come Back
April 13 - Syria - Manipulated Videos Fail To Launch World War III - Updated
April 14 - F.U.K.U.S. Strikes Syria - Who Won?
April 16 - Syria - Pentagon Hides Attack Failure - 70+ Cruise Missiles Shot Down

Posted by b on April 19, 2018 at 12:46 AM | Permalink

Comments
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In answer to your rhetorical "yes, possible and more than'highly likely'.

A good read is Shulgin's statement to the OPCW about the Skripal case:

https://netherlands.mid.ru/en_GB/web/netherlands-en/-/statement-of-a-shulgin-at-the-opcw-ec

Posted by: the pessimist | Apr 19, 2018 1:05:37 AM | 1

In answer to your rhetorical "yes, possible and more than'highly likely'.

A good read is Shulgin's statement to the OPCW about the Skripal case:

https://netherlands.mid.ru/en_GB/web/netherlands-en/-/statement-of-a-shulgin-at-the-opcw-ec

Posted by: the pessimist | Apr 19, 2018 1:05:56 AM | 2

Mod, please feel free to delete the redundant post and this one

Posted by: the pessimist | Apr 19, 2018 1:07:26 AM | 3

The answer is of course, "yes", but the question is why? Surely not to cover up what is now widely regarded as a false flag? And is now even being questioned by western media and commentators. Its not as if the OPCW cannot be relied upon to produce the right answer. And the excuse that Russia tampered with the site has already been made by the US.

Something else going on here.

Posted by: cdvision | Apr 19, 2018 1:14:15 AM | 4

Is it possible that a distinguished Australian police commander delays or prevents the OPCW investigation to protect the British and U.S. allies?

Yes it is. Oz's US/Zionist-approved political elites to whom the commander reports are all poodles. Consequently, when AmeriKKKa tells Oz's poodles to jump their standard response is "How high?"
Their gutless acquiescence is not only embarrassing; it's humiliating.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 19, 2018 1:18:50 AM | 5

Was the explosion just an booby trap being cleared?

Posted by: Adrian D. | Apr 19, 2018 1:26:59 AM | 6

Me thinks Peter Au 1 is gonna dig up interesting stuff on that Ozzi chap.. ;)

Posted by: Lozion | Apr 19, 2018 1:31:30 AM | 7

Is there any mechanism under which Drennan can be impeached for obstruction and cover-up? Likewise the director of OPCW. Of course it won't happen anyway even if there is such a mechanism because the US has too much control over the UN administration and over OPCW, but that does not mean it would not be helpful for Russia to start a process against obstructing officials.

Regarding the article linked by b concerning doubts expressed by the former head of SAS and a former head of the navy - I find it interesting and more than coincidental that the former head of the chemical weapons regiment Colonel Hamish de Bretton-Gordon states demonstratively that a "sophisticated nerve agent" was used by Assad in Douma as if he could even know such a thing even before an investigation. He doth protest too much! He appears to have a direct interes in the matter. One has to recall the chemical weapons exercise in Salisbury involving the chemical weapons regiment just before the Skripal murders, and suspicions of a link between all three only increase.

Posted by: BM | Apr 19, 2018 2:07:04 AM | 8

Here is said "Peter Drennan" re-framing a "poor choice of words" in 2013.
Audio accent suggests "distinguished" does not equate to good diction.
http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2013/s3769571.htm

From Wikipedia: Peter Thomas Drennan (born 1957) has HR experience, a wife and two kids and graduated from the FBI National Executive Institute program.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Thomas_Drennan

He appears to have specialized in repackaging the the media message (a HR/PR specialty) http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2012/s3598948.htm

An image from 2010 (Drennan on the right) maybe a 1,000-words worth for some?
https://www.canberra.edu.au/monitor/2010/may/20100511-drennan

He may well be a very cautious and dedicated professional doing his job -- an opportunist sniper taking out one of his OPCW charges would be world wide news and career limiting. This partly explain behaviors but it also does not remove possible collusion with 3-letter agencies and their partisan agenda.

Posted by: dunno | Apr 19, 2018 2:15:03 AM | 9

Thanks for the posting b. You keep filling in the detail amazing well to the sad soap opera we are living.

What is next? They have to come up with quite the big distraction to cover all the wheels falling off the bus. It would be funny to watch if our fate didn't hang in the balance.

The Americans I relate to are still ignorant of most global politics but are becoming uncomfortable with Trump and his antics, foreign and domestic. I don't know what sort of false flag Americans would rally around these days so it will be interesting to see this train wreck of empire devolution evolve.....grasping at straws all the way down...

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 19, 2018 2:32:08 AM | 10

The link to Shulgin's statement to the OPCW about the Skripal case @pessimist 1 is a MUST READ - it is a really worthwhile read as rebuttal of 8 major lies by the British, including numerous things I have not seen on these pages.

It includes this shocker: on 1st December 2015 the US Patent Office contacted the Patent Office of the Russian Federation asking for an opinion on the patentability of an invention by an American scientist T Rubin. That US patent application concerns a special bullet designed specifically for administrating binary chemical agents and on page 11 contains the following words: “At least one of the active substances may be selected from nerve agents including... tabun (GA), sarin (GB), soman (GD), cyclosarin (GF), and VG, …VM, VR, VX, and [attention!] Novichok agents.”

Posted by: BM | Apr 19, 2018 2:39:37 AM | 11

Is Admiral Lord West's interview a critique or a damage limitation exercise?

We've been here many times before: Yes, we've been duped, but it's no big deal, and the other guy had it coming.

He goes out of his way to say "there's no doubt" that Assad is "a dictator", "a nasty, unpleasant horrible person" who "has used chemical weapons" and "our policy of not talking to him has perhaps prolonged this civil war" all of which is untrue. He isn't, he didn't, and there is no civil war, only brutal British proxies.

The British have a way of making unlawful aggression sound folksy and mild. So firing 130 missiles at a country whenever you please is just "a slap on the wrist".

The news model isn't even bothered by truth and integrity:

4:06 "We know that the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday, or accused a Western state on Friday of fabricating evidence in Douma or perhaps somehow being involved with what happened in Douma, given that we're in an information war with Russia on so many fronts do you think perhaps it's inadvisable to be stating this so publicly? Given your position and your profile isn't there a danger that you're muddying the waters"

The Syrians have uncovered large caches of British and German chemical weapons in the terrorist areas. There are rumours that a British chemical warfare unit was captured. If these prove to be true, may Russia fire 130 cruise missiles at Britain? and would Lord West then call it a slap on the wrist?

Posted by: Bob Jackson | Apr 19, 2018 2:49:01 AM | 12

#12 Whoops, I meant 103 missiles. I'm not dyslexic, just a lousy typist. Sorry.

Posted by: Bob Jackson | Apr 19, 2018 3:01:17 AM | 13

@8 I have more than a notion that HdBG knows more about the whole Skirpal issue than he is letting on and, some time earlier this month, I posited this to him via Twitter. Naturally, he remains silent.

Posted by: Bevin Kacon | Apr 19, 2018 3:03:35 AM | 14

OT but very relevant to the Skripal/Douma incidents.

The Guardian has an article today headlined "The taboo on chemical weapons has lasted a century – it must be preserved" which is a bare-faced lie as the Guardian should know because the British used chemical weapons against the Russian in August, 1919, less than a century ago, and the Japanese, among America's closest allies used them against the Chinese in World War 2.

The strongest case for Churchill as a chemical warfare enthusiast involves Russia, and was made by Giles Milton in The Guardian on 1 September 2013, which prompted this article. Milton wrote that in 1919,scientists at the governmental laboratories at Porton in Wiltshire developed a far more devastating weapon: the top secret “M Device,” an exploding shell containing a highly toxic gas called diphenylaminechloroarsine [DM]. The man in charge of developing it, Major General Charles Foulkes, called it “the most effective chemical weapon ever devised.” Trials at Porton suggested that it was indeed a terrible new weapon. Uncontrollable vomiting, coughing up blood and instant, crippling fatigue were the most common reactions. The overall head of chemical warfare production, Sir Keith Price, was convinced its use would lead to the rapid collapse of the Bolshevik regime. “If you got home only once with the gas you would find no more Bolshies this side of Vologda.”

A staggering 50,000 M Devices were shipped to Russia: British aerial attacks using them began on 27 August 1919….Bolshevik soldiers were seen fleeing in panic as the green chemical gas drifted towards them. Those caught in the cloud vomited blood, then collapsed unconscious. The attacks continued throughout September on many Bolshevik-held villages….But the weapons proved less effective than Churchill had hoped, partly because of the damp autumn weather. By September, the attacks were halted then stopped.


The rest of the article defends Churchill against claims that he wanted to use "poison gas" in India and Iraq against tribesmen by suggesting that he meant tear gas but equally he could have been referring to mustard gas which "only" killed about 2.5% of the 165,000 WW1 soldiers it was used against but that was with a level of medical care I doubt Indian or Iraqi tribesmen could even begin to dream off.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 3:07:17 AM | 15

OT but very relevant to the Skripal/Douma incidents.

The Guardian has an article today headlined "The taboo on chemical weapons has lasted a century – it must be preserved" which is a bare-faced lie as the Guardian should know because the British used chemical weapons against the Russian in August, 1919, less than a century ago, and the Japanese, among America's closest allies used them against the Chinese in World War 2.

The strongest case for Churchill as a chemical warfare enthusiast involves Russia, and was made by Giles Milton in The Guardian on 1 September 2013, which prompted this article. Milton wrote that in 1919,scientists at the governmental laboratories at Porton in Wiltshire developed a far more devastating weapon: the top secret “M Device,” an exploding shell containing a highly toxic gas called diphenylaminechloroarsine [DM]. The man in charge of developing it, Major General Charles Foulkes, called it “the most effective chemical weapon ever devised.” Trials at Porton suggested that it was indeed a terrible new weapon. Uncontrollable vomiting, coughing up blood and instant, crippling fatigue were the most common reactions. The overall head of chemical warfare production, Sir Keith Price, was convinced its use would lead to the rapid collapse of the Bolshevik regime. “If you got home only once with the gas you would find no more Bolshies this side of Vologda.”

A staggering 50,000 M Devices were shipped to Russia: British aerial attacks using them began on 27 August 1919….Bolshevik soldiers were seen fleeing in panic as the green chemical gas drifted towards them. Those caught in the cloud vomited blood, then collapsed unconscious. The attacks continued throughout September on many Bolshevik-held villages….But the weapons proved less effective than Churchill had hoped, partly because of the damp autumn weather. By September, the attacks were halted then stopped.


The rest of the article defends Churchill against claims that he wanted to use "poison gas" in India and Iraq against tribesmen by suggesting that he meant tear gas but equally he could have been referring to mustard gas which "only" killed about 2.5% of the 165,000 WW1 soldiers it was used against but that was with a level of medical care I doubt Indian or Iraqi tribesmen could even begin to dream off.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 3:07:17 AM | 16

"...distinguished Australian police commander"? Give me another one. There is no police force in the whole so-called advanced countries that is as incompetent and as corrupt as the Australian police.

Posted by: Steve | Apr 19, 2018 3:15:08 AM | 17

"Is it possible that a distinguished Australian police commander delays or prevents the OPCW investigation to protect the British and U.S. allies?"

Yes. Australia was happy to donate forty or so victims for MH17 (Anglo Australia, the scum that gathers around the English monarch).

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 19, 2018 3:55:07 AM | 18

One of the small oddities of this incident is that neither bellingcat nor the SOHR are being quoted by anyone in the MSM.

Poor Eliot Higgens must be wondering where his 15 minutes of fame went.

I'm assuming that it is their transparent links to MI6 that makes them persona non grata in this case, lest people start to notice that it is a case of MI6 being here, there and everywhere when it comes to allegations of CW in Syria

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 19, 2018 3:59:42 AM | 19

Lozion 7
Too buggered to do much research at the moment. Perhaps tomorrow.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 19, 2018 4:00:29 AM | 20

>>>> Bob Jackson | Apr 19, 2018 2:49:01 AM | 12

Britain is too poor to fund the terrorists. For instance the austerity measures introduced by the Conservative government have already led to 150,000 excess deaths since 2010. Time for some R2P? Most of the funding, allegedly in excess of $5 billion has come from the people who largely have kept the British economy afloat since Thatcher was Prime Minister, the Suadis, Qataris and various other Persian Gulfies.

our policy of not talking to him has perhaps prolonged this civil war"

I put this down the English understatement. This needs some editing but he unlike the morons in the Conservative government is on the right path. Here is what he actually meant.

our policy of not talking to helping those attacking him has perhaps definitely prolonged this civil/proxy/terrorist war"

As for the Douma attack, this was not a false flag op. but a black propaganda op. There really were people suffocated in Douma just not by chemical weapons but by dust and smoke inhalation. All the White Helmets did was use a bad situation for black propaganda by making a video claiming it was a chemical weapons attack. The British have a long and illustrious history of successful black propaganda ops. like; read about the Soldatensender Calais and Kurzwellensender Atlantik ops by Sefton Delmer in World War 2 and you'll immediately see the connection. I strongly suspect that someone who'd read about Sefton Delmer, most probably a Brit, came up with the idea and told the White Helmets what to do. As black propaganda ops. go it was pretty damned good but the legend was complete bullshit.

The Syrians have uncovered large caches of British and German chemical weapons in the terrorist areas. There are rumours that a British chemical warfare unit was captured.

As old Syria hands say, where are the pictures?

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 4:10:40 AM | 21

Meanwhile, Pat Lang has a piece up on UNZ that covers Douma and the neo-cons. It's worth reading and for an 85-year old American ex-military conservative who loves his country (not necessarily his government) it's pretty exceptional.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 4:18:25 AM | 22

"The 'chemical incident' has likely been faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield."

Watching reports coming out of Syria in real time, I thought it was a genuine strike.
Same as I thought the JK build up was the real thing and also the 59 missiles a year ago.

Once the dust, smoke, and the fog of war had cleared, it became apparent that this, was yet again a choreographed move, same as the missiles on Shayrat airfield.

I may well be wrong, as I do not go along with group think here, but this strike seems a preemptive move by Trump to prevent a push for for US military action in Syria that will take us to WWIII.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 19, 2018 4:20:05 AM | 23

@22

That's group think as well that I have read on many blogs (and I am fairly sure I have read this view on this blog on a number of occasions) as well as MSM.

Might the different (confusing) messages be intentional? Trump both held back from greater aggression because he wants a larger conflict and he only allows a minimum strike to prevent a wider conflict, UK & France are responsible for pushing US into action and are also restraining Trump from unwarranted action, etc. Diametrically opposed views are everywhere.

If further action is planned by US then it is convenient for the US to appear ineffective and incompetent, enthralled to public opinion which must be pacified, to keep Russia onside while assets are moved into place. What if Trump really is not in charge? What if he is just being manipulated?

Might not Trump be keeping the 'right' on-side while the Guardian keeps the 'left' supportive.

You might ask, then why the attack on Syria if it was ineffective and agreed with Russia? Surely, it was just incompetence or feeding the hawks? Might not the great advantage be that it conditions western public opinion? I would guess that if the war really gets hot it will be awhile before the western public really begin to understand that something is happening with real consequence for western life.

If a pattern is being sought to understand what is going on then the closest fit (it seems to me) is the lead up to the First World War.

I emailed PM and my MP (Labour, anti-Corbyn, London) and my partner did similar (MP Conservative, up-North) to object to UK being involved in launching any attack on Syria. But no response so far? Seems unusual, I would have expected some kind of response by now. I wonder, are more attacks coming?

Posted by: ADKC | Apr 19, 2018 5:10:05 AM | 24

When the dust has settled in Syria and people get round to writing their memoirs the White Helmets will be revealed to be nothing more to the British government than a sophisticated black propaganda op.
Their name Syrian Civil Defence means that Syria's real civil defence is invisbile and suggests that the White Helmets are part of an alternative Syrian government.
Their nickname, White Helmets, how can anyone believe they're a black propaganda op?
Their MO, helping people and videoing it even though they seem to only help certain people and disappear when the video cameras stop running.
That they're involved in certain very dubious acts with the terrorists just suggests how evil the Syrian government must be to "force" their opponents to behave in this way and allow their supporters in the West to overlook their murderous brutal nature.
The "Mannequin challenge" is regarded by many here as demonstrating that the White Helmets are a black op. but I suspect it was a sophisticated effort to discredit the reporting by Vanessa Beeley of the connections between the White Helmets and Al Qaeda/Al Nusra/HTS that seems to have worked.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 5:39:32 AM | 25

My Country Right but not wrong.
The past few weeks was clearly Wrong.
Shameful imperialistic rubbish..

Posted by: Jack | Apr 19, 2018 6:05:28 AM | 26

If you google OPCW and Bolton you will find the US has finger prints on them as well.

Posted by: wow | Apr 19, 2018 6:06:55 AM | 27

@Ghost Ship 15. I have no interest in reading anything published in the guardian and consider that rag unfit for human consumption. Having people repost excerpts etc is a lot like handing round used toilet paper for a second use.

The world is full of better materials on Skripal related analysis. Try theblogmire dot com for a fabulous set of questions.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 19, 2018 6:36:56 AM | 29

@Ghost Ship 24. Total BS logic and totally slanted commentary. I would expect this level of 'analysis' in Guardian commentary but they don't allow commentary.

The White Helmets are terrorist killers who sometimes put on white helmets and do propaganda that only ever supports their terrorist faction. They are guilty of direct and complicit in crimes against humanity and they are fully funded by the UK and USA.

The barbarity of the white helmets is in no way a barometer of how bad Assad is. It is a barometer of the disgraceful terrorism unleashed by western nations against Syrian people and its government. The white helmets are a measure of the depraved warmongering of the west, saudi and israeli governments.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 19, 2018 6:44:58 AM | 30

Peter Drennan very likely is deeply corrupt and entrenched in murderous cover-up affairs, see: "peter drennan" site:http://www.innercitypress.com/
(no time to review it myself)

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 19, 2018 7:17:30 AM | 31

There is more to the press conference of Alexander Shulgin:
https://netherlands.mid.ru/en_GB/web/netherlands-en/-/statement-of-a-shulgin-at-the-opcw-ec

He violated the conficentiality rules of OPCW by making public, that parts of of the secret annexes of its report stay privy to the UK.
quote:
The report presented by the Technical Secretariat concerning the British specialists’ findings poses a number of questions and calls for additional detailed examination, including by the British side. Any specialist would understand that the final conclusions can be made only having before your eyes the materials of the chemical and spectral analysis of the mentioned samples. And the Technical Secretariat has passed these materials only to London.
unquote
With those technical data unreported also the chains of custody, if there were any, are incomplete, i.e. the report contains no forensic data at all.

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 19, 2018 7:32:10 AM | 32

Dear b, in case you find it useful, in the Guardian picture, the writing on the arm is مكالحة الارهاب للوحدة, which might mean "fighting terrorism for unit 215" (or 295). I am not a native speaker, so I don't understand some features of the writing, but these could be Syrian vs Classical Arabic.

In any case this clearly identifies the man as a loyalist soldier or militiaman.

Posted by: astabada | Apr 19, 2018 7:36:50 AM | 33

Did Russian military police who control the area reported gun fire of rioting ?

This is exactly their job right?

B should explicitly state this and end this charade?

Posted by: Kalen | Apr 19, 2018 7:53:09 AM | 34

Better news from Italy
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-04-18/us-sub-attacked-syria-not-welcome-back-italy

Posted by: Emily | Apr 19, 2018 8:30:28 AM | 35

Let's launch a campaign to ask KSA Fr and UK to receive and honor the WH. They need medals and full residence permits for their families, aren't they? Why otherwise let them creep in Idlib or Jarablus, uh? These guys are so reliable and honest obviously that it is very strange no one has made an offer to host them!

As for the scenario "panick in the hospital" i bet we'll see it soon practiced by our very own djihadists with the same PR purposes.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 19, 2018 8:31:52 AM | 36

To the extent that Syria strike has pushed up oil prices it was a net PLUS for Russia.

Posted by: Ragheb | Apr 19, 2018 8:37:24 AM | 37

This question is perhaps too obvious, but as I understand it the OPCW is not a UN organization but rather chartered under the Chemical Weapons Convention. What jurisdiction does the UNDSS have in Syria, anyway, let alone jurisdiction over the OPCW?

Posted by: Paul | Apr 19, 2018 8:57:20 AM | 38

A false flag attack is created and a missil attack executed with very lame effect. Why?

9/11 false flag attack kicked off the war on terror. But this attack seems completely meaningless. What's the benefits for USA, UK and France?

Posted by: Johnny | Apr 19, 2018 9:05:46 AM | 39

@1, statement by Shulgin on Skripal

Thanks for that link, interesting read. I notice that they also have his statement from two days earlier about the topic of this thread, where he introduces the "irrefutable evidence" that the Douma event was staged to the OPCW. The link to that statement is here.

Posted by: CE | Apr 19, 2018 9:09:56 AM | 40

Trump and Hanlon's Razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

The rest of the Rothschild/Zionist/Deep State swamp has long hidden behind such useful idiots, including most of the elected/bureaucratic/bankster/militarist puppets infesting NATO countries.

The Rothschilds et. al. cannot avoid the label of malice, as they have long acted purposefully on the declaration in the mid-1700's: "I care not who sits on the British throne, the man who controls the money supply controls the Empire... and I control the money supply." Baron Mayer Rothschild

"If my sons wanted no wars, there would be none." Baron Mayer Rothschild's wife.

For 300 years the Rothschilds have controlled the political and economic levers that resulted in the endless line of wars. The Balfour Declaration by which the British gov't stupidly endorses to this day was written to (and largely by) the Baron Rothschild of that day.

Attempting to discern intent by the visible layer of the otherwise well-disguised Rothschild Promised Land agenda is a fools errand.

"By deception thou shalt do war." The Mossad motto. The Rothschild modus oprandi.


Posted by: A P | Apr 19, 2018 9:13:10 AM | 41

Where have the White Helmets from Douma gone?? Edlib? Jarabulus? get ready for another "chemical attack" there soon. They have become the specialists of the chemical false flags.

Posted by: Virgile | Apr 19, 2018 9:20:16 AM | 42

Why is nobody questioning NATO's theatrical assertion that chemical weapons are the worst-of-the-worst? Quite frankly, I don't buy it.

Here's a What's Left article from mid-2015 which examines that specious and overblown claim from several perspectives and concludes that it's hokum...

Rethinking Chemical Weapons
https://gowans.wordpress.com/2015/06/27/rethinking-chemical-weapons/

Imo, the only reason NATO's unimaginative weasels, dorks and 'boffins' chose chemical weapons on which to base their childish smear campaign is that Ordinary Citizens are less familiar with chemical weapons, and their effects, than with most of the violent methods used to kill and maim people in times of war (and peace).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 19, 2018 9:23:59 AM | 43

@Emily 35,
us-sub-attacked-syria-not-welcome-back-italy

On the one hand it is a slap in the face of the PTB, but on the other hand it is promoting the City-State agenda of the same PTB. You gotta love the power of the dialectic.

For the inattentive: City-States (xyz-city programs, Global Parliament of Mayors, etc) are replacing Sovereign-Nations, especially in Europe.

Posted by: Angus | Apr 19, 2018 9:30:00 AM | 44

@A P #41

"For 300 years the Rothschilds have controlled the political and economic levers that resulted in the endless line of wars. The Balfour Declaration by which the British gov't stupidly endorses to this day was written to (and largely by) the Baron Rothschild of that day."

If we have allowed these people to yank our chains for the past three centuries, then it must be because they are a f*ck of a lot smarter and more motivated than the rest of us stupid Gentiles.

But we believe in a system in which the smartest and most motivated should rise to the top...

Posted by: ralphieboy | Apr 19, 2018 9:32:18 AM | 45

Napalm is worse than chemical weapons.
So are white phosphorous and Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME) used by "Israel" against Palestinians.
They're worse because the intention is to maim without killing.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 19, 2018 9:39:57 AM | 46

It's good to keep an eye on the whole field and this is a good summation of the complexities and little known details of the past.
https://journal-neo.org/2018/04/19/for-the-chinese-quadrilateral-peace-treaty-draft-on-the-results-of-the-korean-war/

Posted by: Bakerpete | Apr 19, 2018 9:56:27 AM | 47

Outstanding piece as usual. The international community needs to make a decision to either enforce the United Nation's charter and its covenants or just scrap the organization all together.

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

Article 20

1. Any propaganda for war shall be prohibited by law.

Posted by: Tobin Paz | Apr 19, 2018 10:17:00 AM | 48

@ Virgile #42
Where have the White Helmets from Douma gone??

Future will tell, but Russian journalists found one of their victims at Douma:

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bht2xhwHTKt/

Posted by: someone | Apr 19, 2018 10:50:07 AM | 49

@43 Hoarsewhisperer

Napalm is worse than chemical weapons.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry at the irony. So we have Bolton in his first week on the job and Mattis "The Butcher of Fallujah" authorize an illegal missile strike in response to an "alleged" chemical weapons attack... both members of the Bush administration that used white phosphorus and napalm in Iraq.

And who reported it at the time... none other than George Monbiot and The Guardian:

The US used chemical weapons in Iraq - and then lied about it

Until last week, the US state department maintained that US forces used white phosphorus shells "very sparingly in Fallujah, for illumination purposes". They were fired "to illuminate enemy positions at night, not at enemy fighters". Confronted with the new evidence, on Thursday it changed its position. "We have learned that some of the information we were provided ... is incorrect. White phosphorous shells, which produce smoke, were used in Fallujah not for illumination but for screening purposes, ie obscuring troop movements and, according to... Field Artillery magazine, 'as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes...' The article states that US forces used white phosphorus rounds to flush out enemy fighters so that they could then be killed with high explosive rounds." The US government, in other words, appears to admit that white phosphorus was used in Falluja as a chemical weapon.

...

There were widespread reports that in March 2003 US marines had dropped incendiary bombs around the bridges over the Tigris and the Saddam Canal on the way to Baghdad. The commander of Marine Air Group 11 admitted that "We napalmed both those approaches". Embedded journalists reported that napalm was dropped at Safwan Hill on the border with Kuwait. In August 2003 the Pentagon confirmed that the marines had dropped "mark 77 firebombs". Though the substance these contained was not napalm, its function, the Pentagon's information sheet said, was "remarkably similar". While napalm is made from petrol and polystyrene, the gel in the mark 77 is made from kerosene and polystyrene. I doubt it makes much difference to the people it lands on.

Posted by: Tobin Paz | Apr 19, 2018 10:53:39 AM | 50

A new video from OAN's Pearson Sharp actually talking to Douma residents on the streets of Douma near the place of the alleged attack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iD9C9koRmro

Posted by: S | Apr 19, 2018 10:57:10 AM | 51

Thank you, b. I hope this analysis helps put pressure on the UNDSS. Yet again I am reminded that the difference between democracy and oligarchy is the difference between a world in which b would be writing for the major national presses and the world in which Thomas Friedman does.

Posted by: WJ | Apr 19, 2018 11:02:43 AM | 52

I second b's recommendation to watch the Ikhbariya TV short documentary on the alleged attack (16 min). Here are 13 doctors and nurses who actually worked at the Douma hospitals at the time of the alleged attack stating plainly that nothing of the sort happened: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSrRV-zdNic

Posted by: S | Apr 19, 2018 11:05:07 AM | 53

you did not answer your primary question. you offered speculation, when it seems to me the only question that needs answering is why the Syrian army and the Russians who took that territory are not providing security? The Russians asked the OPCW to come, Assad agreed. How come news teams can go but the OPCW team cannot, into an area now controlled by Russia and Syria. If there is opposition on the ground to the OPCW visit, why is that opposition not being specifically identified. without answering these things or at least attempting to, the rest of your otherwise admirable narrative seems somewhat irrelevant. It certainly doesnt come close to answering the primary question.

Posted by: tamlin | Apr 19, 2018 11:13:13 AM | 54

@ ralphieboy who said: "If we have allowed these people to yank our chains for the past three centuries, then it must be because they are a f*ck of a lot smarter and more motivated than the rest of us stupid Gentiles."


Sorry, no. It is an unfortunate legacy of the obsolete human predator/alpha survival traits that 0.001% psychopaths infest leadership. It is not that they are smarter of more motivated, it is that they are more greedy and rapacious than the 99.99% who do the heavy lifting in a society. Psychopaths do not build cooperative relationships, they manipulate them.

The very fact the Rothschild Zionists cannot leave peaceful societies (their own and foreign) to function and thrive demonstrates this beyond doubt. The Rothschilds and their well-heeled Bilderberg/Davos sycophants are not the only 0.01%ers who need to be curtailed (or eliminated), but they are the current alphas. The Borgias and Medicis had their poisonous day, and the likes of Genghis Khan showed that brute force is never far from use.

The Rothschild/Zionist/Central Banking Ponzi/Media/Spy scam is tightly coupled to the Genghis-style US/Anglo/EU Empire's militarist and economic warfare. One cannot survive long without the other.

The simple act of becoming aware of how the Rothschilds et. al. ply their vile trade is the beginning of the end of their dominance. They are bullies and how to deal with bullies is known: make public their cowardly deeds and deprive them of the cover of bogus "law".

If more people understood the current implications of Milgram and Zimbardo's research, and saw the Bernay's inspired propaganda MSM for what it is, the Rothschilds and their ilk could not survive to perpetrate their crimes-against-humanity-by-proxy. Soros is but one visible face of this type of hateful manipulation of humankind's collective wealth.

Posted by: A P | Apr 19, 2018 11:13:36 AM | 55

Tamlin 53

It is not the Russians or the Syrians that do not provide security.
It is the head of the security detail accompanying the delegation
that claims security is not enough.

Yet, all kinds of journos have been roaming the sector unharmed

IMO you are laying the blame where it does not belong

Posted by: CarlD | Apr 19, 2018 11:24:07 AM | 56

Ghost Ship
Pat Lang is NOT 85 years old, he is 78.

Posted by: mauisurfer | Apr 19, 2018 11:26:40 AM | 57

I think it is clear the "Chemical attack" did not happen. If you are the Empire you surly have your operatives securely, and secretly stationed within any "independent" OPCW body, especially if you intend to use "chemical attack" as your justification to slaughter innocent people for the interests of the AngloZionist/Wahhabi Empire.

Martin Scorsese could not have done a better job. From the grad seines of men in haz-mat suits around Surrey to the suffocating children in Duma it could hardly be better orchestrated.

The Empire only needs 30-35% agreement in the public to be successful and so far they have at least that.

Posted by: Babyl-on | Apr 19, 2018 11:28:36 AM | 58

@ A P who seems to be advocating attacking individuals rather than the structural problem of allowing private finance that empowers these and other anti-humanistic folks.

Make the tools of global and local finance public utilities along with banning private finance and you make it so the power to be a Rothschild or a Soros goes away.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 19, 2018 11:32:58 AM | 59

And another twist to the Duma saga - STUNNING coincidence? Chlorine containers from Germany and smoke bombs from Salisbury (Skripal poisoning) found in Syria

Posted by: Fran | Apr 19, 2018 11:38:27 AM | 60

"We heard shots fired (on a show on TV) and were afraid to enter the area."

Posted by: WorldBLee | Apr 19, 2018 11:41:55 AM | 61

Psychohistorian, your phrase about tbe wheels falling off the bus is on point. Last night's David Koch funded 'Nova' program on PBS is an example: the entire prorame sought to present human caused climate change, alternative energy, organic farming as though they, supreme scientists that they are, were the true advocates of such discovered solutions to global difficulties of this nature.

Never mind that many of us have been screaming ourselves hoarse and many dying before seeing any solution since the '60s and long before that. It wasn't profitable to the ptb; now it is.

I hope, dearly hope, that now it will be profitable to have peace in our time. It would seem that is the only way we are going to get it

Posted by: juliania | Apr 19, 2018 11:56:42 AM | 62

@ psychohistorian: I am only advocating that the intentional perpetrators of generational arms-length crimes against humanity not be allowed to continue their endless agenda. I abhor violence, but when a group cannot be curbed by diplomatic (including legal) means, they leave society no alternative otherwise preventing them from continuing. If the Rothschilds et. al. do not see the wisdom in allowing humans to peacefully move forward, they decide their own fate.

Zionism and the Israel/Promised land agenda is a multi-generation scam based on a loose collection of writings of unknown authorship/editing and dubious historical veracity.

Posted by: A P | Apr 19, 2018 12:08:31 PM | 63

b - your posts are quite amazing and very informative.. thank you for doing this.

Posted by: james | Apr 19, 2018 12:09:09 PM | 64

Lots of activity in Syria, too much to post when it's easier to visit Canthama's Twitter and read its contents. The battle to rid Syria of the Outlaw US Empire's terrorist spawn continues. Iraqi AF is now hitting Daesh in Eastern Syria, and some sort of combined operation is likely in near future given the meeting between C4+1 at Baghdad intel center.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 12:13:40 PM | 65

The AngloZionist/Wahhabi Empire does save money by not having to provide uniforms to so many of its brigades.

Posted by: Babyl-on | Apr 19, 2018 12:41:38 PM | 66

'Chlorine is undetectable' - b

"If, as the terrorist supporters claim, Chlorine was used in the 'chemical attack', the OSCE investigators are unlikely to find any physical evidence of it. Chlorine dissipates and leaves no unique traces in the dead body." - B

Does the OPCW have any coroners? I believe it leaves scarring in the lungs

"Chlorine required a concentration of 1,000 parts per million to be fatal, destroying tissue in the lungs, likely through the formation of hydrochloric acid when dissolved in the water in the lungs (2Cl2 + 2H2O → 4HCl + O2)"

It has been less than two weeks. There should be bodies available to examine unless Assad has carted them off to his Crematorium in Damascus where he disposes of his victims in front of his bust of Adolf Hitler.

Posted by: Christian Chuba | Apr 19, 2018 12:48:16 PM | 67

Well, to answer the final question, it is indeed possible...
Thanks for the peace very well done B. But here comes more work to do. The NZZ today is publishing a peace about Belgian firms selling 96 t of Isopropanol to Syria which is described as precursor substance needed for the manufacturing of Sarin, between 2014 and '16(Nervengift,https://www.nzz.ch/international/syrien-belgische-firmen-liefern-stoff-fuer-nervengift-ld.1378789) insinuating the Assad did this. What do you make out of this? It seems to me this is an important matter to counter.

Posted by: Pnyx | Apr 19, 2018 12:49:59 PM | 68

So the circus goes on..."...this is a democracy after all."

Peter Ford with Tucker Carlson
https://youtu.be/7R2QhK0-Pe8

Posted by: partisan | Apr 19, 2018 12:53:35 PM | 69

CC @66 -- Re: Autopsies of Douma victims

Could be possible, unless the White Helmets took them all up to Idlib with them on the buses? Heh.

I can't recall where I read it, but it was stated that the bodies of the Douma victims had been buried. Nothing about where.

Posted by: jawbone | Apr 19, 2018 12:54:11 PM | 70

According to Lavrov, the UN security team did come under fire by terrorists who were tipped off as to who they were and when they'd arrive. Lavrov's comment echoes that made by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, who observed "Someone does not want an unbiased professional investigation to take place."

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 12:56:35 PM | 71

Syrian boy from the Chemical video found by Russian TV crew in Duma.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPFaEG9vJT4

Posted by: partisan | Apr 19, 2018 12:59:08 PM | 72

Here we have a translated transcript of Shulgin's testimony at OPCW's Hague HQ where he points out the 8 fundamental British lies over the Skripal attack. He prefaces his remarks thusly:

"I would like to start my speech with the words that belong to the great thinker Martin Luther, “A lie is like a snowball: the further you roll it, the bigger it becomes”.

"This wise aphorism is fully applicable to politics. He who has chosen the path of deception will have to lie again and again, making up explanations for discrepancies, spreading disinformation and doing forgery, desperately using all means to cover the tracks of the lies and to hide the truth.

"The United Kingdom has entered this slippery path. We can clearly see all of this on the example of the “Skripal case” fabricated by the British authorities, this poorly disguised anti-Russian provocation accompanied by an unprecedented propaganda campaign, taken up by a group of countries, and the finalized unprecedented expulsion of diplomats under a far-fetched pretext. Please, do not try to pass this group for the international community – it is far from that."

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 1:07:42 PM | 73

@24
10 warships composing the USS Harry S. Truman, departed April 11, are on their way to the Middles East. http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2018/04/11/uss-harry-s-truman-csg-departs-on-2018-deployment/

Thierry Meyssan make the point that the FUKUS strike presents a new narrative, which spells out the fact to the public that the unipolar world is no more. No more 'coalitions of willing', and no more 'successful' regime change wars by covert ops. The new narrative here is a return to national armies, vs. national armies. Of course this is just as far from the truth as the previous narrative was but it is covering a new geopolitical reality.
Officially FUKUS held back from firing on Russian and Iranian targets, but was this enough reasons to not kill anyone in Syria? In any case this is a first for an Allied bombing campaign since the end the of the cold war: not having casualties.
http://www.voltairenet.org/article200729.html

Posted by: majobrs | Apr 19, 2018 1:11:57 PM | 74

Who is stalling the investigation.. ..? A much more complex affair than the present hype and simultaneous denial (different factions) of the Douma 'chem attacks.'

White Helmets are not just masquerades of ‘charities’ who support the Agressors (US-uk-isr etc.), yes the WH make these clumsy in ya-face false ‘savior’ vids and so on as propaganda in Syria. But they fulfill other functions, the ‘theatrical’ actions on the ground and the vids don’t justify the expense, which is considerable. Happily I can finally quote ppl more courageous than myself:

Syria: The Darker Side of the NGO Complex. Preying on Children of Conflict.

Feb 2017, 21st Cent Wire, with V. Beeley. (vid 38 mins.)

http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/02/24/syria-the-darker-side-of-the-ngo-complex-preying-on-children-of-conflict/

Posted by: Noirette | Apr 19, 2018 1:19:05 PM | 75

It's no wonder the Outlaw US Empire desires radical modification of the current Syrian Constitution as it contains this remarkable passage:

"The Syrian Arab role has increased on the regional and international levels over the past decades, which has led to achieving human and national aspirations and achievements in all fields and domains. Syria has occupied an important political position as it is the beating heart of Arabism, the forefront of confrontation with the Zionist enemy and the bedrock of resistance against colonial hegemony on the Arab world and its capabilities and wealth. The long struggle and sacrifices of our people for the sake of its independence, progress and national unity has paved the way for building the strong state and promoting cohesion between the people and their Syrian Arab army which is the main guarantor and protector of the homeland’s sovereignty, security, stability and territorial integrity; thus, forming the solid foundation of the people’s struggle for liberating all occupied territories."

Perhaps the entire passage ought to be bolded, but I chose to emphasize just that part. Last year, Assad made a speech emphasizing the need to continue to advance the philosophy of Pan Arabism, and his orations highlighting the goal to recover all Syrian lands show his constitutional adherence to what he swore to uphold. Clearly, his convictions give him courage, and that courage is replicated by most of Syria's citizenry and its SAA.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 1:33:09 PM | 76

@67
Pnyx UK seems to be producing a lot of Sarin then, https://www.statista.com/statistics/342998/propyl-and-isopropyl-alcohol-sales-volume-in-the-united-kingdom-uk/
96 tonnes looks quite low for an industrial nation, UK in that period 2014-16 2453 tonnes.
Its 60 seconds research to find that out, what is wrong with the NZZ.
I get through a couple of litres a year cleaning camera and electronic equipment.
Isopropyl alcohol is manufactured for a wide variety of industrial and household uses, and is a common ingredient in chemicals such as antiseptics, disinfectants and detergents.

Posted by: Gilbert | Apr 19, 2018 1:46:39 PM | 77

The links to the speech by Shulgin stall out...

Posted by: Charles R | Apr 19, 2018 1:46:48 PM | 78

The Theatre of Absurdity is in full force, unfortunately Syria's Gov. along with Russians are in it. An Iranian cleverly not participating in it. Neither they have in the past. Why to deal with an idiots?

"The rest of Syria's air defense system, which is completely Russian made, Russian designed, Russian supported, engaged extensively and comprehensively failed" per LtGen McKenzie

But at least the Syrians have some sense of humor they reported transfer of "two unexploded" Tomahawks to Moscow. In certain way they ridiculed the Deranged Dotard when he said that he has new "smart" missile. Not so smart after all.

http://tass.ru/mezhdunarodnaya-panorama/5139903

So we have faked chemical attack followed by non-existing coalition barrage of stand-off and cruse missiles against Syria. Even if there were one what's would be military purpose and objective of it?

Posted by: partisan | Apr 19, 2018 1:47:47 PM | 79

@ Pnyx | Apr 19, 2018 12:49:59 PM | 69
Isopropanol is a kind of universal organic solvent so ubiquitous in the chemical and the food industry as fuel for machines. To claim it is precursor of sarin is stupid-ploitation, simply.

Posted by: Hansi Hausmeister | Apr 19, 2018 1:53:02 PM | 80

@ Psychohistorian who said: "Make the tools of global and local finance public utilities along with banning private finance and you make it so the power to be a Rothschild or a Soros goes away."

You are operating on the flawed presumption that it is the normal business of humans tending to their own temporary custody of their part of the economic/political system that is the problem. Humans claimed ownership of the land they tilled, and collaboratively traded using money/tokens as a proxy for value long before the terms capitalism, socialism or communism were a glimmer in any philosopher's eye.

A wide variety of societies showed how all these political/economic systems could be successful, but all to date have succumbed to the baser instincts of the socio-/psychopathic few.

To be the leader of a modern country or to be a military leader would seem a punishment for a balanced human, so most often the nut-cases apply and get the jobs. As good as Putin and Xi are compared to NATO leaders, they still have to be pretty ruthless to attain and hold their positions.

Take one look at Melania's face and you can see she is thinking "I didn't sign up for this crap when I married Donny-boy."

Posted by: A P | Apr 19, 2018 2:11:07 PM | 81

@59 Fran

Ok, I'll have a go at it, once again.
That Duran article lacks basic knowledge when it's dealing with CWs / basic chemistry in general.
1. Smoke bombs are not CW.
2. Chlorine containers - these plastic containers do not (NOT) carry elementary chlorine. Elementary chlorine is a. chemically very aggressive and b. gaseous in a standard atmosphere. Over time these plastic containers would be degrading due chlorine's 'aggressiv-ness' pretty quickly and, also, be leaking due its high vapor pressure. Storing and/or transporting elementary chlorine in that kind of container would raise very serious safety issues.
Containing inorganic/organic chlorinated compounds, liquid or solid, like hypochlorite would be another matter.
3. A gas cylinder with chlorine from Germany or any other country doesn't mean anything, simply because the cylinder may have been exported/imported multiple times to a host of countries for perfectly legal purposes (synthesis, water treatment comes to mind) before finally ending up where it was found. For clarification, just in case, I'm not trying to defend Germany for her most despicable conduct in regards of Syria.
4. Whilst I really appreciate Zakharova with her usual 'no nonsense' approach, this time she's spouting utter nonsense. 'the most horrible kind of chemical weapons' - this is simply plain wrong, as it is visible at high concentrations, smells strongly, has higher density than air and when exposed or inhaled it hurts badly, thus urges a person to evade and, most importantly, requires a rather high concentration (~0.5-1 mass%) to immobilize (and kill) people quickly enough before they'd manage to escape. Even chlorine's sister element bromine would 'perform' better due its analgesic properties and, therefor, its quite stealthy approach to a person's wellbeing.

No, the real killer these days is DU-munitions that leave behind a myriad of nano / micro crystalline uranium oxide particles that are the cause for a great many deaths and simply won't go away for an extended period of time. However, nobody is talking about the issue, particularly not the ones that employ these munitions.

Posted by: Hmpf | Apr 19, 2018 2:28:16 PM | 82

@59 Fran

Ok, I'll have a go at it, once again.
That Duran article lacks basic knowledge when it's dealing with CWs / basic chemistry in general.
1. Smoke bombs are not CW.
2. Chlorine containers - these plastic containers do not (NOT) carry elementary chlorine. Elementary chlorine is a. chemically very aggressive and b. gaseous in a standard atmosphere. Over time these plastic containers would be degrading due chlorine's 'aggressiv-ness' pretty quickly and, also, be leaking due its high vapor pressure. Storing and/or transporting elementary chlorine in that kind of container would raise very serious safety issues.
Containing inorganic/organic chlorinated compounds, liquid or solid, like hypochlorite would be another matter.
3. A gas cylinder with chlorine from Germany or any other country doesn't mean anything, simply because the cylinder may have been exported/imported multiple times to a host of countries for perfectly legal purposes (synthesis, water treatment comes to mind) before finally ending up where it was found. For clarification, just in case, I'm not trying to defend Germany for her most despicable conduct in regards of Syria.
4. Whilst I really appreciate Zakharova with her usual 'no nonsense' approach, this time she's spouting utter nonsense. 'the most horrible kind of chemical weapons' - this is simply plain wrong, as it is visible at high concentrations, smells strongly, has higher density than air and when exposed or inhaled it hurts badly, thus urges a person to evade and, most importantly, requires a rather high concentration (~0.5-1 mass%) to immobilize (and kill) people quickly enough before they'd manage to escape. Even chlorine's sister element bromine would 'perform' better due its analgesic properties and, therefor, its quite stealthy approach to a person's wellbeing.

No, the real killer these days is DU-munitions that leave behind a myriad of nano / micro crystalline uranium oxide particles that are the cause for a great many deaths and simply won't go away for an extended period of time. However, nobody is talking about the issue, particularly not the ones that employ these munitions.

Posted by: Hmpf | Apr 19, 2018 2:28:57 PM | 83

Oh. My God. I posted a bit about Shulgin's speech as it was happening, and the UN translator very distinctly said the Martin Luther quote was attributed to Martin Luther KING(MLK). I must've had other stuff on my mind because I didn't think twice about it.

Anyway this is the "quality" we have, and can always look forward to within the UN system.

Posted by: sejomoje | Apr 19, 2018 2:49:07 PM | 84

Here's an interesting news piece:

"Belgium firms prosecuted over exporting Sarin precursor to Syria"

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-43811614

Belgian companies exported 96 tonnes of isopropanol, a sarin precursor, to Syria between 2014 and 2016.

24 shipments of sanctioned chemicals from Belgium to Syria and Lebanon took place between May 2014 and December 2016, in which 165 tonnes of isopropanol (69 tonnes to Lebanon and the remaining shipments to Syria), 219 tonnes of acetone, 77 tonnes of methanol and 21 tonnes of dichloromethane had been exported without the appropriate licenses.

According to Belgian toxicologist Jan Tytgat (KU Leuven), victims of sarin die a painful death. “Diarrhea, urinary flare, narrowed pupils, spasms that give you the feeling of suffocation, vomiting, lacrimation and saliva production: the victim quickly becomes paralyzed, suffocates and dies. The lethal dose of sarin for adults is estimated to be less than 1 milligram.”

"The companies are AAE Chemie Trading from Kalmthout, a wholesaler of chemical products for industrial use; Anex Customs from Hoevenen, a business office that provided administrative services until it went bankrupt in 2017; and Danmar Logistics, a logistics company from Stabroek."

Roland Cassiers, Jan Tytgat, Francis Adyns, Jean-Pascal Zanders

they had been exporting chemicals to private companies in Syria for over a decade.

And to mark my love of irony:

Last month was the 100th anniversary of the first chemical weapons attack, which took place in BELGIUM in 1917.

https://syrianarchive.org/en/investigations/belgium-isopropanol/

Posted by: Daniel | Apr 19, 2018 2:55:40 PM | 85

Is Sarah Abdallah a Hezbollah op?
I have never followed her and just learned of her today w the BBC hit piece upon all dissenters.

Posted by: WJ | Apr 19, 2018 3:10:06 PM | 86

@ A P who wrote:
"...
To be the leader of a modern country or to be a military leader would seem a punishment for a balanced human, so most often the nut-cases apply and get the jobs. As good as Putin and Xi are compared to NATO leaders, they still have to be pretty ruthless to attain and hold their positions.
..."

You could throw the leader of Iran in the batch also. What I have said before about this and will repeat is that the God of Mammon religion, which is another way I refer to private finance, forces humanity to live under a certain set of narrative/incentives.

Yes, you have to be a good asshole to stand up to the bad assholes. And yes again, maybe your tribes values and expression of them is not perfect either.....but, as a species, I can't help but think we can do better at organizing ourselves than the God of Mammon slavery system that most are living under today.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 19, 2018 3:11:14 PM | 87

@84 I'll assume the UN translator went through the American public school system. "Martin Luther" is unknown there, so they probably did a mental auto-correct.

Posted by: Jesrad | Apr 19, 2018 3:13:43 PM | 88

re: Paul 38
This question is perhaps too obvious, but as I understand it the OPCW is not a UN organization but rather chartered under the Chemical Weapons Convention. What jurisdiction does the UNDSS have in Syria, anyway, let alone jurisdiction over the OPCW?
Posted by: Paul | Apr 19, 2018 8:57:20 AM | 38

The Chemical Weapons Convention is enforced (or "implemented") by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). In this way it is similar to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, commonly known as the Non-Proliferation Treaty or NPT which is enforced by the International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA).

Neither the OPCW nor the IAEA is a United Nations agency, but both both are controlled by the US using the United Nations if necessary as an enforcer to ensure that the agencies obey the US. The US tightly controls the IAEA mainly by controlling who heads the agency. The US lost control to an unfriendly chief at the start of the Iraq war but regained it later with the appointment of a friendly chief.

In this case, as Paul suggests, the friendly Aussie chief of the UNDSS has been called in to make sure that the truth does not emerge from Douma. There is no other basis for UNDSS being in Douma; the United Nations has taken no interest in Syria nor especially the illegal US assault on that country. So it's sort of ironic that the UN should now be abetting a coverup of an assault violating the UN Charter.
Thank you Paul. You nailed it.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 19, 2018 3:14:08 PM | 89

Hmpf @83--

Agree 100% about DU. Its grossly/hideously destructive aspects led me to write a short essay in an attempt to bring attention to the fact that all weapons are essentially chemical weapons and thus all ought to be banned under the Chemical Warfare Treaty. That was back in 2005.

Charles R @79--

Link still works for me. Sorry you're having issues.

sejomoje @84--

I often see Russians prefacing their remarks with similar observations. It makes their unprofessional and often undereducated counterparts in the West appear as the fools they are most often. Of perhaps greater importance, it also details what I see as a fatal drawback in the abilities of Western citizenry in general--specifically, the level of ignorance and great lack of desire to learn and gain wisdom: Particularly within the Outlaw US Empire.

Oh, and in my haste I forgot to provide the reference to my Syrian Constitution citation.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 3:17:25 PM | 90

re 85. Isopropanol is available on Amazon as a cleanser.

Posted by: Laguerre | Apr 19, 2018 3:17:52 PM | 91

@84|sejomoje

I saw the honorable Ja'afari (hardest job in the world) speak at the UNSC meeting after the FUKUS strike. He (original UN stream on ruptly) had a profoundly incompetent English translator that totally failed to make sense of his words. After a couple of minutes, abruptly a woman took over who did a good job ever after.

Posted by: CE | Apr 19, 2018 3:18:58 PM | 92

DB @89--

Thanks for digging further into Paul's comment. That's the sort of info that deserves to be tweeted and retweeted many thousands of times.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 3:22:00 PM | 93

"Belgium firms prosecuted over exporting Sarin precursor to Syria"

What shameless propaganda. There is a 9/10 chance that you have this dangerous pre-cursor in your house, better known as rubbing Alcohol. Syria is under so many sanctions they cannot import Aspirin or toilet paper from the west. If they resort to buying bricks from N. Korea an article will pop up, 'Syria caught buying building materials from N. Korea that can be used for chemical weapons program'.

Posted by: Christian Chuba | Apr 19, 2018 3:26:45 PM | 94

Gilbert 1:46:39 PM | 78 / Hansi Hausmeister 1:53:02 PM | 81
I indeed think you both are right, but NZZ makes believe different. Textually they wrote (translated):
"After the use of sarin in August 2013, probably killing hundreds of people, the Syrian regime joined the Chemical Weapons Convention and pledged to liquidate its toxic gas arsenals. These included the stocks of isopropanol, a chemical used in the production of sarin. Due to the EU sanctions, high concentrations of isopropanol exports to Syria required special licenses from September 2013. Nevertheless, three Belgian companies delivered 96 tons of isopropanol in high concentration to Syria between 2014 and 2016 without the necessary permits. At the request of the customs authorities, they will have to appear before a court in Antwerp in May."
Obviously it's a propaganda piece (of shit), but I wonder if its not possible to nail them with more specificity.

Posted by: Pnyx | Apr 19, 2018 3:27:47 PM | 95

For you carrier fans, the Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) entered the 6th Fleet are of operations yesterday, according to its facebook. That means it was about halfway across the Atlantic as shown here.

For trivia fans, the ship is misnamed because the "S" should have no period after it. The 33rd president had no middle name, only a middle letter.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 19, 2018 3:47:00 PM | 96

It's a small world.....
from Al Masdar News:

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:30 P.M.) – “Syrian Government forces found chlorine in containers, the most dangerous kind of chemical weapons, from Germany and smoke pellets produced in – attention – Salisbury, Great Britain,” in Eastern Ghouta’s liberated areas, said Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova during her weekly briefing in Moscow, on Thursday. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 19, 2018 3:55:44 PM | 97

From Drennan's UN bio linked to by b. He graduated in 2011 from the FBI National Executive Institute program.

http://neiassociates.org
FBI NATIONAL EXECUTIVE INSTITUTE ASSOCIATES

The FBI National Executive Institute Associates (NEIA) is a private, non-profit organization, of chief executives of the largest law enforcement agencies throughout the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Europe. Representing a broad range of key Federal, state and local agencies, these top officials, totaling more than 1400, are all graduates of the FBI’s National Executive Institute (NEI), an intensive, three-week leadership training program held at the FBI Academy at Quantico, Virginia..."

"FBI NEIA MISSION
NEIA Provides a learning environment where its members can network, mentor, and share unique executive leadership experiences. Committed to serving as a recognized center of excellence in law enforcement education, research and training, NEIA provides members with lifelong opportunities for the free exchange and dissemination of ideas, information and personal association with their national and international peers. NEIA members are accountable to the guiding principles of:"


Quite a network they have built up that needs looking into more.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 19, 2018 4:03:41 PM | 98

The "White Helmets" were supported by murdered British MP Jo Cox. Although apparently a loyal soldier to the war party, Jo became a nuisance to her leftist intellectual husband and to the war party, so an assassin was called in and a patsy was arranged.

Posted by: Anonymous | Apr 19, 2018 4:07:44 PM | 99

I'm somewhat confused about what this is all about. Russia has declared clearly that it will defend Asad. Why else put troops into Damascus three months ago to prevent a decapitation strike?

If that's the case, what's the point of these little things like suggesting that the 13 Douma doctors were constrained?

Apart from the fact that the US power is getting increasingly loony in its Russophobia, what is the point here? Must be an attempt to convince Putin not to fight When the big attack comes. Fat chance.

Posted by: Laguerre | Apr 19, 2018 4:16:47 PM | 100

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